NAME: Ted Bert
YEARS AT CDFA: 8
PROGRAM: Feed, Fertilizer and Livestock Drugs Regulatory Services (FFLDRS) branch / Feed and Livestock Drugs
TITLE: Environmental Scientist
USUAL DAILY ACTIVITIES: Day-to-day activities involve routine inspections at firms throughout my area to ensure feed and food safety. Though, about 80% of my job is federal contract work with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) conducting Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) compliance inspections. Sometimes my work includes investigating animal deaths, sampling feed, and ensuring label requirements meet the quality and quantity claimed by the manufacturer of the product.
HOW DO YOU WORK FOR THE CALIFORNIA FOOD SUPPLY? Our program is industry funded. Therefore, we regulate the industry we serve. Our program reports to a board which is made up of industry manufacturers, brokers and livestock industry nutritionists. We focus our program priorities and activities based on the board’s recommendations, which today is mainly feed and food safety and ensuring equity in the feed market. The feed industry funds our program not only to regulate them, but to ensure a safe food/feed supply to the global consumer.
MEMORABLE MOMENT ON THE JOB: I don’t know if I have one particular moment, but I would just say that my field supervisor and my program manager, along with the whole feed team, are exceptional people. We all value and respect each other and we all have the same goal; and that is that the CA feed industry succeeds and the feed program is fair while providing exceptional service to the industry we regulate. The knowledge, talent and experiences that we all bring to the group make it a great team to be a part of.
PHILOSOPHY OF LIFE: Work hard and treat others the same way you want to be treated.
ANYTHING ELSE YOU WOULD LIKE TO SAY? Working through COVID-19 has presented many challenges, but something that I appreciate about the feed program is the constant communication I’ve had with my whole team and program management. We were able to use our down time to update all of our inspection forms, standard operating procedures and document sharing capabilities. We communicate now more than ever, and I think it’s been really positive.